Sheets... what you need to know about selecting the dreamiest of sheets.

Choosing the perfect bedding can be intimidating... thread counts, different weaves, cotton, bamboo, polyester, organic... so many choices. So how do you choose?

Popular belief leads us to choose our sheets based solely on thread count... the higher the thread count-the better, right? Wrong. While thread count does tell us the number of threads per square inch, it does not tell us quality, feel, or composition. There are actually 4 factors that we recommend you to consider when selecting the dreamiest bed linens for your needs.

#1. Type & and Quality of Fiber

Of all the sheets out there today, most are made from cotton. The three types of cotton commonly used for bed linens are American Upland, Pima, and our favorite, Egyptian. American Upland Cotton is probably the most commonly used cotton today. Unlike the Upland Cotton, Pima is a finer, longer staple cotton (Upland is mostly short to medium long staple). The longer the staple of the cotton, the greater the fineness and the overall strength of the fibre. And the longer the fibre, the softer the weave. Egyptian cotton, grown in the Nile River Valley in Egypt,  is renowned for its long staple length soft and lusturious yarn it produces. Because of the Egyptian Cotton's fine yarn, more threads can fit per square inch, giving it a tauter weave that will last significantly longer than a regular cotton weave sheet will.

Organic? If you suffer from sensitive skin or allergies, or prefer green products in your home, organic cottons are grown, harvested, manufactured, and packaged according to strict guidelines. Our Cuddle Down Organic Bed Linens have been GOTS certified... from the soil-seed-weaving-finishing are chemical and pesticide free.

Bamboo? Bamboo fibers have millions of micro-sized gaps which enable it to "breathe" better than cotton. The fibres expand when warm to allow skin to breathe and contract when cool to create more warmth. By doing so they adjust to your unique perfect sleeping temperature. They are also extremely soft and have incredible moisture wicking capabilities. See our 300TC Bamboo bedding sets.

Polyester? Polyester is a synthetic (man-made) fiber widely used in bed linens. It is easier to produce (than cotton), durable, and extremely cost effective. Used alone, it makes a crunchy sheet that often makes for a sweaty sleep. However, when combined with cotton, the polyester yarn gives the cotton a greater degree of elasticity. This is what makes a poly-cotton blend sheet less likely to crease after washing. It also helps hold the linen's shape and prevents shrinkage. Poly-cotton blends are most commonly found in motels/hotels/lodges who need a cost-effective product that can withstand heavy usage. Our Hospitality line of polyester-cotton blends have been tried and tested in large-scale hotels...they can withstand heavy laundering and continue to feel smooth and look fabulous.

#2. Where it is Woven

The best weavers in the world tend to come from Italy, Portugal, Germany, Israel and other European Countries. These weavers tend to have the loveliest end products: a softer and more durable sheet.

#3. Type of Weave

The two most common weaves are Percale and Sateen. No one is better than the other, it really is a matter of personal preference as to which one you like better.
Percale is a plain fabric weave where the warp and the weft ends cross over and under each other one at a time. The result? A tightly woven fabric with a fine texture and finish. See our lovely Cuddle Down 220TC Luxury Percale line of bed linens.
Sateen is a weave that produces a more luxurious look and feel as its warp ends interlace with the filling threads. Sateen weave fabrics have smooth, silkier feel. See our 500TC Egyptian Cotton Sateen bed linens from Cuddle Down if this is the type of weave you love.

#4. Thread Count

The most common mistake made when choosing bedding is that a higher thread count makes a better sheet... this is FALSE. Thread Count tells us the number of threads per square inch. And whether or not a 1000 TC is "better" than a 250TC pretty much boils down to personal preference. A lower thread count sheet (like a 220TC), produces a crisp cool sheet that will actually become plusher over time. While a higher thread count (like a 500TC), produces a lighter and smoother sheet due to the tighter packed finer threads.

At the end of the day, we spend a lot of time in our beds. Aside from looking fabulous, they need to feel fabulous. And if we are making beds for guests in our suites and bed & breakfasts, they need to be able to keep on being fabulous while enduring heavy laundering. Quail Cottage Amenities has so many lovely types of bed linens to choose from...please contact us if you have any questions, or wish to see samples... we are here to help!

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